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Digging Deep: Ben Hauke

Digging Deep: Ben Hauke
Matt Clough

The South London electronic music scene is brimming with raw, undeveloped talent; constantly adapting to the ever changing climate of the underground scene. That said, there are few producers out there like Ben Hauke.

While Ben might not have been active for long he already has an impressive roster of sound design credits to his name including independent film and TV scores and even penning the music for a phone app. The latest in an ever growing resumè comes in the form of the 4 track Wari EP (which we previewed exclusively here) on the eclectic Melodica Recordings imprint.

Ben’s attention to detail and maturity shine through in the EP with the unique fusion of forward thinking house and West African tribalism which fully rewards repeated listens as new elements, vocals and instruments emerge from nowhere, leaving this EP feeling like a living, breathing organism. The traditional African instrumentation is the most absorbing detail of the tracks, from the toe-tappingly hypnotic bongos and prancing flutes of “Songo”, to the uplifting jazz trumpets of “Mali Star”, all of which is complimented by the contrasting, chopped vocal samples.

Whether it be for the dancefloor devotee or seasoned home listening aficionado, there’s something for everyone here. Really the only question that remains is what has inspired such a unique approach to production? We caught up with Ben for the latest in our Digging Deep series, to explore some of the deep-seated influences behind this unique and enigmatic EP. From the smooth jazz of Ahmad Jamal to the infectious afrofunk of Mory Kante, it’s an intriguing selection.

BH: “These are a collection of songs I have sampled over the years…Some are spooky, some are just quirky.”

Nana Mouskouri – Open Your Eyes (1970)
This was sampled through out the intro to my first EP Creeps on Campus in 2011.

Stanley Black – Flamingo (1973)
This record was sampled in the track “2do” which also features on the Creeps on Campus EP.

Ahmad Jamal – Perfidia (1955)
This dirty old 7″ was bought in Falmouth and features on my track “Moretrams”.

Mory Kante – YeKe YeKe (1984)
This record is part of a collection I sampled when making the Wari EP with Melodica Recordings, it’ll be a bonus track.

The Stereo Sound Disc – Intro to Stereo (1958)
You can’t beat some 1950’s banter when making beats. This is used through out my album Pop Beats.

Sweet Honey And The Rock – Stranger Blues (1987)
Beautiful, this was stolen from my Mum. The sample can be heard in my track from 2011 named “This Morning”.

The Miracles – The Bird Must Fly Away (1977)
This was found in Cambridge and features on a currently unreleased beat.

The Nigel Brooks Singers – I Don’t Know How To Love Him (1975)
As above, this was also found in Cambridge and features on a unreleased beat. Don’t knock the Christian vibes, they got some nice voices.

Ray Lema – Sahara (1983)
This was also with the Melodica collection of sample material. Ray Lema is the one. I sampled it for a track in the Wari EP.

Mike Hayes – Live at the Fox and Firkin (Lewisham 1980)
This record was randomly found in Cambridge as well. I cant find out much else about it, so it is probably fairly rare. The weird thing is that The Fox and Firkin is also my local pub in South East London.

Ben plays CRATES tomorrow night (Sunday) at Brixton East.